Review 0 comments on The Slipper Room Show – 2017-12-30

The Slipper Room Show – 2017-12-30

It’s a freezing Saturday night on the Lower East Side, and it’s the last Saturday of the year. I arrive just in time to catch the grace of Jason Mejias, rope-wrapped and dangerdangling.

Bastard Keith is the host for the early set, does a roll call for birthdays, and leads the two halves of the Slipper Room into a harmony for “Happy Birthday! Happy Birthday! And now you get a hand job!” The crowd happily obliges.

“Congratulations for being shat out all those many years ago into an incomprehensible world.” says the Bastard. “But I didn’t get a hand job!” complains an audience member. “… Yet!” is the immediate comeback.

And then things go slightly off the rails. BK says something about Jewish people, and someone in the crowd boos at the wrong time, causing Bastard Keith to put together his search party of one for the possibly antisemetic boo-er, who turns out to be a shit-faced bro, of which there are sadly too many on some nights. It could have turned ugly, but Bastard Keith deftly teetotters on the brink between comedy and ostracizing, commenting on the beauty of the phone flash lights behind him as he turns around and makes his way back to the stage.

“Our next performer is going to wash the taste of creeping fascism right out of your mouth!” It’s a guest star, Roxy Stardust, from Scotland, and while unsurprisingly the bagpipes are present in the music, the butt tassels are a nice surprise. Or, as BK puts it: “she puts the tart in tartan!”

Bastard Keith declares that a key was left in the tip bucket, but nobody claims it, leaving him excited to try the key on every lock in New York he can find. He left the rest of the tip bucket alone though: “I don’t need it I have money buried all over the world on strategic locations.”

Sean Blue is next, juggling up to steven balls in the air, undressing himself while keeping his juggle going, taking a tour of the audience sitting on people’s laps and ending with a riveting finale where he pulls his pants down to finish naked.

Bastard Keith, not wanting to be outdone, gives the audience a choice between left and right, busts out a nut, and ends up agreeing with everyone that the left testicle is indeed the better choice.

Lilin Lace comes out dressed like Michael to the tune of Dirty Diana, and bends her way through every chorus and guitar solo, peeling off her glove with her foot.

Peekaboo Pointe treats us to a one month old act, with a minimalist approach to movement, starting with a pink boxer jacket and some poses, and ending on a chair playing guitar solos on her upright legs to The Final Countdown – as a vague prelude to her other tired stripper act.

The first set ends with Roxy and Lilin on the go-go… and then we’re in for an unexpected and unannounced surprise in the second set.

Out comes, in her golden dress, Boo Bess, who hosts shows for Wasabassco, putting a clear stake in the ground by singing “I want to know what love is”.

After the song, she proceeds to make herself comfortable, taking a seat on the edge of the stage, telling us this is her first time ever hosting at The Slipper Room, and acknowledging this momentous occasion by promising us she’ll be grinding her cherry on us all night, at the start of this very last day of the year 2017.

She introduces The Maine Attraction, pantomiming her way through Rick James with phone calls and chatterhands.

As Boo Bess outros her, Maine slips through the curtain and hugs her from behind, trying to pick up the glove she threw just before. I use all of my will power to restrain myself from shouting out, “no glove, no love”.

Next is Nina La Voix, with a blue wig and in a leather pussycat outfit.

After a few asides and a costume change inbetween acts, Boo goes: “I went on a tangent. I was supposed to introduce the next performer.”
Which is Miss Ekaterina, making butterflies out of bodies and sheets.

After that, Penny Wren treats us to a new act with blue boa’s and pained – or ecstatic – facial expressions.

Boo does a quick impromptu demographics poll of the audience.

“Any other people from the eighties? Congratulations, it’s almost too late to have kids!
Anyone born in the nineties? I’ve probably rubbed one of your assholes clean!
Anyone from the seventies? Just keep blaming us for everything.”

After that, she instructs us to show approval of acts by making the sound of a pussy with our mouth, which the audience isn’t quite ready for yet.

Having a woman host in the Slipper Room is definitely a breath of fresh air in an otherwise testosterone-dominated microphone bubble.

Jelly Boy the Clown shocks the crowd as per usual, putting lit-up daggers in his nose, and drinking a whole glass of wine through a straw running into and out of his nose.

Madame Rosebud performs to a coldwave Cassette number, challenging the audience less than usual.

Time for the break, with The Maine Attraction and Rosebud on the gogo, prompting some marital adoration from Bastard Keith.

Boo comes out in the third dress of the night, with her back to the crowd, doing her own intro in a low voice, then turning around and drawing approval from the crowd, prompting her to respond: “That was a really easy way to validate my ego.”

She proceeds to share a story that I won’t go into details on, but you can make up your own version by using the words “tampon” and “press-on nails.”. She punctuates the story by giving the balcony a really good view of her, uhm, balcony.

Like I said, a breath of fresh air. And that is what Penny brought as well, waddling across the stage as a penguin. Even in an outfit like that she still manages to exude some semblance of grace.

Ekaterina comes out to Dr. House’s visit to the St. James Infirmary, twisting her body through several contortions that would put anyone else under the good doctor’s care, sucking on her own toes, and eating a whole rose, then spitting it out on the audience.

“There’s people kissing in the back. Ugh, that’s the worst. I can SEE you. It’s not THAT dark!”

The Maine Attraction comes back to set fire to her hands, her boobs, and finally the room.

Rosebud brings a new act, and after it finishes ends up naked and hugs Boo too, while Boo gives us all a pronoun lesson, which maybe only Bastard Keith has ever done on this stage.

Jellyboy finishes the night, spitting fire across the stage that makes us feel the heat even several rows away.

Uncle Earl comes out for the traditional Saturday ending, leading us in a sing-along while performers – including an off-duty Jenny C’est Quoi – cavort behind him in all stages of undress.

The Slipper Room managing to snag Boo Bess as a host is a great move. The roster is extremely male-dominated, with to the best of my knowledge only Fancy Feast and Julie Atlas Muz hosting once in a while at irregular intervals.

New York is brimming with great women producers and hosts: Calamity Chang, Sapphire Jones, Fancy Feast, Broadway Brassy, Perle Noire, Shelly Watson, Ula Uberbusen, Sydni Deveraux, Nasty Canasta, and Anja Keister, just to name a few. It almost seems like willful on the part of the Slipper Room that their roster is so white-male-dominated.

Here’s hoping they realize they could use a little bit more of the non-white-male perspective at the mic to switch it up and keep things interesting for the audience as well as stay relevant in an increasingly female and non-binary world. If they’re smart, they lock in Boo Bess now for a weekly slot.

Review 0 comments on Hazel’s Farewell Show

Hazel’s Farewell Show

Image Credits: Medianoche.

Dearly beloved,

we are gathered here tonight to say goodbye to one of New York City’s finest performers – Hazel Honeysuckle is leaving for Las Vegas.

No more than a hundred mourners were allowed to buy a ticket to the Wasabassco send-off show she curated, handpicking friends and loved ones, as well as their favorite acts of hers. House rules don’t allow for photographs, sadly, so you will have to let your imagination run wild as you go through this review.

The first of Hazel’s picks we see tonight is the hostess, which is our favorite pick too: Boo Bess comes out in a lovely green sparkly sequined dress – the first of a few tonight, and if I recall correctly, one she bought while vintage shopping with Hazel.

The show kicks off with Hazel herself, sending us off with “No More Love” in a green and purple peacock-feathered dress.

Amanda Whip is stage kitten tonight, and even for this job Hazel has picked the best of the best, rolling over the floor and flexing all limbs to pick up performer’s clothes – again… and again… and again. It’s amusing to see Boo lose her train of thought or simply cede the spotlight and admire the view in those little moments.

Next, Boo undresses from green to blue, a dress that Hazel gave her. She introduces Puss-N-Boots, the first of two to implore us to come together as we say goodbye.

Topher Bousquet shows off his hooping, flexing, and singing skills, bringing us “Don’t Cha” by the Pussycat Dolls, but adapting it to the moment: “Don’t you wish Scott was hot like me? Don’t Cha… Don’t Cha Hazel, Don’t Cha” It’s cute, sexy, and charming, and Scott seems to appreciate the sentiment too. Topher’s performance iss doubly impressive because the microphone isn’t wireless, so he ends up navigating the microphone cord (with some help from Amanda) while keeping the hoop spinning.

Next up was supposed to be Medianoche, but she couldn’t make it, and they found a last-minute replacement: Gary Nachos. Gary is no slouch, performing a perfectly coordinated routine to “Hey Ya”: the tassels twirl to the beat during the “shake it” break, and “get on the floor” throws Gary on the ground. I hadn’t seen Gary ever before, but surely she knows what to do.

“And even when Gary shows up in sweatpants, he’s not lazy – he emptied that bag on the table and picked out the eight perfect Doritos for this act!” says Boo.

Time for a first break, and even the ambience music is on point – I pick up on “Please Don’t Go” and “Don’t You Forget about Me”.

The second act of this trilogy opens with Chris Harder, dressed like a mix between Prince and George Michael. Even when “Freedom” drops out for a few seconds, Chris is a pro who doesn’t miss a beat, and the audience keeps singing as he sashays his way over to the DJ booth and gets the music to come back. It doesn’t hurt either that he ends his act with a perfect twirl of the asstassels.

Penny Wren performs her first ever act, which happened to be with Hazel in the cast. Boo tells us that Penny still remembers the compliment Hazel gave her that night: “you run in circles real good!”. We got a demonstration of exactly just how good, as well as a unique Penny move at the end – holding her leg straight up, then falling into a split from there. I am definitely not trying this at home.

Sydni Deveraux is the second performer of the night asking us to Come Together, dressed in a blue and gold marching band outfit made by Nasty Canasta.

Rosie Cheeks makes her Wasabassco debut tonight, on Hazel’s request, and brings one of her signature acts, in glittery green – Money Make Her Smile, including a glitter glove shower.

Time for a second break – and again, the music sets the mood, with “Go Your Own Way” and “I Will Always Love You”. Tonight is coming for your tear ducts.

For the third act, Boo comes out in a golden dress, and introduces the rarest act of the evening: Scott Hazelton performing possibly my favorite Hazel act, Cookie Monster, as a tribute to his wife. I manage to just touch one of the flung Oreo’s with my fingertips, but it slips past before I get a chance to catch it. Scott pulls the act off convincingly and gets the loudest applause of the night.

Speaking of pulling off and applause, somewhere during the night Boo Bess asks the biggest Hazel fans to volunteer for a competition. I hesitate for a moment, then decide against volunteering, as the room is probably full of Hazel fans more ardent than me. One woman and two men step up though, all of them named Alex. The competition involves doing your best Hazel imitation on stage to one of her many songs. I’m glad I didn’t volunteer, because all three of them did a much better Hazel than I could have pulled off!

Next up is Tiger Bay, a performer who can take her acts towards the ridiculous, the sublime, or the scary. Today she’s doing something unspeakably cute in pastel colors with an eel kissing her neck and other body parts. “Does he have a name?” asks Boo after the act. “Yes – his name is Electric William. Get it?” Tiger Bay says from behind the curtain.

Time for something more patriotic, with Ula Uberbusen‘s red, white and blue salute to our current reigning commander-in-chief. Her sentiment is echoed enthusiastically by the crowd. This is also Ula’s first show with Wasabassco.

Time for the final act, a duo act: Nasty Canasta and Hazel Honeysuckle perform as the unicorn and the princess. It’s a delight to see Hazel comb Nasty’s pony tail, as well as see Nasty deftly use her hooves to take Hazel through various stages of undress.

All the performers that are still around come on stage for the curtain call, and get to dancing to “I’ve had the time of my life.” In the ensuing melee, Hazel manages to lose both of her pasties before they all vacate the stage and the party starts.

Star Wars VIII beckons us in fifteen minutes, so we wrap the night up, discussing what our favorite act was. One thing is certain – we got to see some rarities tonight.

Godspeed, Hazel and Scott. May you return often while you’re gone and come back eventually!

Review 0 comments on The Slipper Room Show (2017-10-13)

The Slipper Room Show (2017-10-13)

Surprise host tonight – it’s Stache Novak, the Friday early edition! Stache kicks it off at 21.40 with a few zingers, such as “was a taint, now it’s a twasn’t”, or calling himself a “gentleman of negotiable affections.”

Gal Friday is the first performer of the night, railroading us through a classic purple routine of hers. I don’t know if it’s because of the act evolving over time or if I only just noticed the parallel, but this time I see the act as a five year prequel to Peekaboo Pointe‘s Lazy Stripper act – sort of the “I no longer give a fuck” version.

“Gal Friday – the love of my life, my future wife”, rhymes Stache after staring at her uncomfortably from the side of the stage during her act, earning him a few middle fingers.

Next up is Chipps Cooney, stunning the audience by giving away the secrets of the trade, and making it look so easy that he’s the Velvet Underground of magicians – everyone who sees him perform is sure to become a magician as a result. Stache agrees: “The illusion is perfect!”

Stache is throwing around the jokes and the one-liners – “He was so lazy, he married a pregnant woman!”

Seedy Edie provides relief from the comic relief, showing us that even the devil has a softer side, dancing to a song she shares with Emily Shephard.

I am a sucker for aerial, and there are few as good as Lucy Licious, displaying equal parts strength, control and grace. The song she picked is a beautiful plaintive piano tune that somehow reminded me of Eternal Sunshine.

Stache manages to pull us out of the contemplative mood Lucy put us in to by ragging on Los Angeles: “In LA, if you want to hide your money, put it in a book.”

He did so to introduce the next performer, who calls LA home: Coco Ono. She comes out in a nun’s habit, as a Foreigner to New York, and answers the age-old question we all want to know – what love is – with a toss-up between “love is a man handing you bananas from the side of the stage” and “love is giving away bananas so you can let them let you bite the banana that feeds”. Coco’s act ends with a Canadian double-fisting and lit-up pasties, so this act covered a lot of ground in only a few minutes.

Time to get awkward – Stache does an audience competition, where the winner gets a classic Bill poem recited, and the loser gets a lap dance – and this time the loser witnessed Stache completely naked save for a bandana and a strategic ball-cup, one of which was removed right before the curtain fell.

What a way to introduce the break, where Seedy Edie goes around with the tip bucket, and Coco Ono and Lucy Licious take turns on the gogo box.

The second half starts off a little confusing, with Chipps Cooney doing an actual burlesque act, with a single chest tassel. Gal Friday pulls us out of our confusion with another classic Gal routine, walking on by and flicking her vajayjay magic into the audience.

Wilfredo treats us to his version of “Those were the days”, shaking his perfect Spanish rump and swaying to the music.

Lucy goes for rope for her second act, at times hanging from a single foot or hand, making the audience watch with baited breath.

Seedy Edie picks the best songs for her acts – this time Ella Fitzgerald morphs into Karen O and Trent Reznor’s reworking of Immigrant song, as Edie is dressed in black with bird feathers.

Coco Ono counters with one of the least obvious songs for a Burlesque act – Paranoid Android by Radiohead, a late nineties Bohemian Rhapsody. Ballsy! She comes out in a freshly delivered Japanese schoolgirl outfit, and walks us through the song’s four acts with increasing intensity, taking off a garter belt that’s actually a ball gag and wearing it, then revealing the rope tied around her waist, handing part of it to the audience (who proceed to pull a little harder than expected in their excitement), and finally ending with a good old-fashioned transparent paddling. Gal Friday and Seedy Edie were peeking from the side of the stage.

And with that, the early set is over! Gal comes out on the gogo, gives a civilian Cheeky Lane a good old-fashioned spanking, and also pulls Coco Ono in for a full mounty.

Since the midnight show is hosted by my favorite host, Bastard Keith, I stick around for a bit longer. He starts off by singing “BK wants to make love to you.”, humping the side of the stage while proclaiming: “The proscenium is my friend. I’m not just going to say ‘hey, it’s fuck o’clock.’ I want to take my time!”

Looks like it’s Radiohead night at the Slipper Room tonight, as Joshua Dean does his rope loop aerial number to Creep, pulling some incredible moves and performing more spins than I thought were humanly possible.

Rosie Cheeks comes out in black, trying to figure out who’s done it to the tune of Perry Mason, and just like BK gets intimate with the proscenium.

“How many of your masturbate?” asks the bastard, and after a quick show of hands, “So many truth sayers… and two liars!”

Things get a little bit more blurry after that, but I see The Maine Attraction, GoGo Gadget performing an act with three songs and a beak, and Darlinda Just Darlinda who performed her patriotic duty by removing a stray 45 from her grabbed pussy and ripping it up. She keeps it political by going into the break with a tip bucket and a shirt that reads “Thank God for abortion!”

After tipping, I scoot off with friends to the Meatball shop across the street for a favorite late night snack. Good night, Slipper Room!

Review 0 comments on Spanking the Lower East Side (2017-10-12)

Spanking the Lower East Side (2017-10-12)

It’s a busy thursday night at Nurse Bettie – the bar is packed and it’s tough making your way to the front.

Tonight I have a special role – I’m a… show runner… best boy grip? In short, I get to provide food for use in an act! I take my job seriously and go to the McDonalds on Delancey, only to find out that they’ve decided to renovate and the closest alternative is on Sixth Avenue. Uh, no. I try out a local old school burger place called Mikey’s instead, and add a second set of fries by request for the backstage to share.

The go-go starts at 10 past 10, and Coco Ono, visiting NYC from Los Angeles this weekend, climbs on the window ledge for six songs and a few fistfuls of dollars. It’s worth it pushing through the crowd from my pretty decent third row position by the stage and go all the way to the back and back again. Luckily my spot is still there when I get back – or maybe that’s just the result of the steady air conditioning leak dripping on me? I almost wonder if the show’s producer, Calamity Chang, is gently ribbing Coco by putting on “Going Back to Cali” as the last go-go song, but if it is it’s meant in good fun.

Calamity kicks off the show at 10.30pm, mentioning that this show has been going for eight years. “When I talk to my Chinese mother, and I tell her that, the first thing she asks me is: how much money are you making? And when I tell her, she answers, you could have gotten two PhD’s in that time!”

Calamity introduces the first act, and I like that we head straight away into slaying the patriarchy. Petite Renard comes out as a suffragette, showing off the big guns, and donning sunglasses for the second half where she switches gears and demonstrates they’ll be just fine without us men.

Lady Mabuhay is new to me, but the way she deftly invites the audience to ride her pony with her suggests that that was mostly my mistake.

Nina La Voix turns Ariana Grande into a decidedly more grown-up experience, ending with a glove-fueled hint of asphyxiation.

Time for the break, and Petite Renard takes the gogo position in the window while Nina LaVoix goes around with the tip bucket.

Calamity opens the second half of the show with an old-fashioned dance-off, which not surprisingly is handily won by the woman in the pair.

And then it’s the act I ran show for – Coco Ono takes a big bite out of the Lower East Side – or at least that part of the LES that gets served at Mikey’s. I had never heard Tina Turner’s version of Whole Lotta Love, but I think it is now actually my favorite. She starts off with a box in hand, peeks into it, and then opens it to empty it of its contents. And Coco certainly wins over the crowd tonight, feeding fries to the first two rows, and striking poses with burger and shake.

Aphrodite Rose came out in a full-body kaleidoscopic tiger suit (words I’d never imagine being in such close proximity to each other, like, ever). Her shoe came off (or started off off) quickly and made its way to her face, as a telephone – yet another sign that the nineties called and wanted their act back. It was a confusing experience, like all the best Burlesque acts. Calamity agreed, I think, quipping “Now I know if I ever commit murder, I want do it with you!”

Nina took over the mic to introduce the host of the show who’s also doing the final act: Calamity Chang, coming out in a many-tasseled outfit, getting some help from Nina in the front, and showing off some intricate lacing work in the back!

And with that final act, the night at Nurse Bettie is over, and I get a chance to debrief the show with Wang Newton.

Review 0 comments on Comic Con Vixens IV

Comic Con Vixens IV

I arrive at City Winery at 23.45 sharp, and luckily the show starts slightly less sharp so I have just enough time to be ushered to my seat at a table with three people I don’t know. Right on cue, my favorite mancee appears from behind the curtain – it’s Bastard Keith, who on this night has the right setting to let more of his nerd flag fly (although there were still plenty of dicks to be had, in case you were worried)

Bastard Keith gets straight down to business by singing “I gotta be me”, then introduces the audience to some principles of Burletiquette: “Keep your hands to yourself, but let everything else out – hoot, holler, yell, whistle.”

The producer of the show, Dangrrr Doll, is the first performer on stage, performing as Sonic the Hedgehog. The stack of bangles on her wrist that she throws over her shoulder, making them bounce and tinkle just like in the game, is a very nice touch, setting the tone of detail orientation for the rest of the night.

Teo doesn’t need more than a light brown Federation shirt to evoke Captain Kirk. He brings out a big balloon which he sticks his head in. I couldn’t tell if it was intentional or not, but when Teo puts more of his body in the balloon, it pops. It does look like the act finished a little bit before the music ended.

Maki Roll, a DC-based performer, comes out as the perfect Storm – even having the milky white eyes Storm has in the movies when she uses her powers. The LED lights on her cloud-like fan streamers evoke the lightning she throws at the audience.

Bastard Keith gives kudos to DJ Stormageddon, and invites the audience to tweet him some nerd sex positions by listing a few of his own favorites:

  • the Pennywise: you make your genitals look like a clown. Bonus points for painting your ass like a spider.
  • The Wonder Woman: it’s so fucking good! You had no reason to believe it would be, but it is.

  • The Justice league: an orgy with too many bodies and you didn’t build up to it. But you’re going to do it anyway.

Quite the buildup, but the next act deserves it, as tonight is her final night as a burlesque performer. Stella Chuu comes out dressed as a Japanese school girl: Yuki Nonaka from The Testament of Sister New Devil – a seemingly innocent enough start, but somewhere in the middle Stella reveals the rope dress she’s wearing underneath, and Dangrrr Doll comes out again and gets intimate with Stella, and immediately after Bastard Keith and Teo run to the other side of the stage and start making out with each other in response. The performance ends with a green snake between her legs that shoots white streams of something sticky into the audience, leaving it to wonder what the hell just happened.

There’s really only one way to follow this up – and that’s with a break.

When the break ends, Hazel begins, and to the stratospheric sounds of Rush she does an act from the Hobbit. I finally get to see Hazel perform on stilts for the first time, and she’s clearly had practice, as she pulls off some daring moves stalking around the stage. Her outfit is immaculately impressive too – a beautiful tree, with two smaller tree people puppets hiding somewhere in her bountiful foliage. Given the 50% extra fabric required to pull this off, this act showcases Hazel’s dedication to the craft. While Hazel was billed to perform as Zatanna, I doubt that would have worked better than the act she chose to give us instead.

Topher Bousquet brings us Voldo from the SoulCalibur games – a great choice for his flexible contortion work. The knives for hands is a nice touch too.

Bastard Keith pleads ignorance: “I don’t play anything above eight bit.” I would love to see him get a perfect score on my Atari VCS 2600’s Pitfall – but let’s not get my fantasies get in the way of a finish for this review.

BK declares a winner for the Nerd sex positions competition after mentioning some honorable runners-up. “The Stan Lee: you jack off in the corner during a threesome, but you still get all the credit anyway.”

After that, a Cylon comes out, scanning red eye light included. Various pieces of the costume move – the quality of the outfits this year is truly impressive. Halfway through, the Cylon loses enough armor to reveal the humanoid underneath: Stormy Leather, sporting a skin-colored patch running up and down her back, with a running led light there as well, to great effect. I finally get what it means to be in love with a strict machine.

We’re nearing the end of the show, but luckily, the two forces of nature behind this show since the beginning are each performing a second act. “It’s about to get *really* nerdy”, Bastard Keith promises. Dangrrr’s act starts with a gold coffin on the floor, from which she emerges a little bit into the act as a Mimic from Dungeons & Dragons. I think a big chunk of the audience are taking their mental image of this particular treasure chest home tonight.

And then, last but not least, and for the last time ever, she returns: Stella Chuu, performing as D.Va from the game Overwatch, which now puts me personally effectively in uncharted territory. Stella catches me up quickly though, so that I now understand that this character involves Dorito’s (kudo’s for the big Dorito’s used as fans, that was hilarious!), fed to the audience, as well as a big can of Mountain Dew, which somehow magically makes it out of several cups onto her hair and body, and strangely enough even the rest of the Dorito’s are no help at all in cleaning the mess up. Stella leaves another explosion on stage in her wake – going out with a bang.

They must have been very good Dorito’s too, because both Dangrrr Doll and Bastard Keith eat some from the floor after the curtain call.

What a great night – if only we didn’t have to wait a whole year for the next one!

Los Angeles, Review 0 comments on Bootleg Bombshells Cosplay Night

Bootleg Bombshells Cosplay Night

Just because I’m traveling for work doesn’t mean I can’t go catch a burlesque show… and so I find myself on a Friday night in Los Angeles headed to the Townhouse in Venice.

For five years, Bootleg Bombshells have been hosting weekly shows there, and every fifth Friday they host a special show as well.

Tonight’s theme is Cosplay, so I expected to see my childhood memories perverted in the flesh. And the show certainly delivered on that front.

The Townhouse is a beautiful Venice venue that houses a speakeasy basement level, with a different cocktail menu from upstairs, and is a perfect setting for a fun Burlesque show that allows performers to work the floor and the audience as well.

As a special treat, tonight’s host is the fierce and fabulous Lux LaCroix, dressed as Rocket Raccoon.

Lux brings out the first performer, a guest star: Angie Cakes comes out as Evil-Lyn from He-Man – every young bad boy’s wet dream. Sporting a blue outfit with trademark crown and a lit-up scepter, the absence of Skeletor drove her into the lap of an unsuspecting audience member as she proceeded to wrap her witchcraft around his neck.

Elese Navidad scrubs the floor clean of money, of which there is plenty that came from a table close to me. Lux throws oil on the fire by calling out people throwing more bills right after she picked them up, causing her to do a double-take and a fresh bend.

The lights dim, and a shrouded masked figure makes an appearance. A palpable sense of youthful fear shoots through the room – Shredder is back! The tension releases when the mask and shroud come off, revealing a beaming Coco Ono, now dressed as Michelangelo, dancing to the show’s theme song.

Coco gets a pizza delivered in a box, puts it on the floor, and gets on all fours, eating a slice out of the box. She hands out slices to the audience (including one to yours truly) and I surmise it to be a vegan pepperoni pizza – excellent choice.

After that, Coco is writhing on the floor, wrestling with a yellow jumpsuit for her final transformation into April O’Neil – the real reason we used to watch the show. Three acts for the price of one, in a free show!

Time for the intermission – celebrating birthdays. One woman quickly steps up, but it takes some negotiating to find a second person having their birthday somewhere this year. Both people claim to be turning 34, an unlikely coincidence, but Lux goes with it as Lulu Mon Dieu sweeps up the money with her bare hands. “You’re from Brooklyn? I was born in Brooklyn! That’s why I’m allowed to be obnoxious. That, and I’m an only child.” After some more off-microphone interchange with the birthday boy, she goes “Oh no, that’s not how this goes. We’re not having a conversation. I’m talking to you and you’re liking it.” Our kind of sass.

Coco Ono delivers the birthday spanks, fifteen each, and the show continues with Ghostbusters. Elese Navidad comes out dressed like one, but her undressing is interrupted by the arrival of a gooey green ghost taking the stage, sending her hiding behind a barrel. To make matters worse, the Puff Man comes out too! Elese gathers her courage, headrolls to her ray gun, and does what she does best – bust! She celebrates her victory with a few twists and turns on the pole, before strapping her proton pack back on to keep warm and clothed. They do say, dress for the job you want.

The show continues with a slice of Star Wars. From the back of the room, a rebel pilot in orange jumpsuit and white helmet pushes through the crowd – it’s Lulu Mon Dieu delivering us her rebel yell. It’s only a few minutes before the Death Star is in firing range of Yavin-4, so she wastes no time shedding ballast, and swings from the ceiling to headlock another patron with her legs.

We reach the end of the show, and Lux introduces her favorite performer ever, amazing and modest at the same time: herself. Rocket Raccoon throws out the most adorable and powerful dance moves, leaving us both aroused and confused at the same time, questioning whether we should confront our latent specism.

55 minutes in, the show is over all too soon, given the fun we had reliving our childhood.

If you’re in Los Angeles, do yourself a favor – head to the Townhouse in Venice on Wednesday nights.

Review 0 comments on The Slipper Room Midnight Show (Saturday, 2017-09-02)

The Slipper Room Midnight Show (Saturday, 2017-09-02)

After going to see Wasabassco’s Hellfire Club, we moved on to Slipper Room and arrived at the end of the earlier show.

Bastard Keith was talking to two girls on stage, one a UFC fighter, the other a chef. One of them was from England, and about to get married. “What is going to be your new surname? And surname in England is the name we give to a sir.” “You’re going to love this”, she replied. “It’s Handside hyphen Dick.”

I think she temporarily broke Bastard Keith. I haven’t often seen him at a loss of words due to a fit of laughter before, but she sure did it.

Bastard brought out Jonathan Nosan, a contortionist, who wowed the crowd bending every which way.

Then The Maine Attraction the came out, dancing with fire on her hands, ending her act by setting her pasties on fire.
With that, the first show ended, and Cheeky Lane took the gogo box, inviting people to send her dick pics, and showing them to passersby as they came in.

Wilfredo was our host for the second show, and started off the night with his song for all seasons, throwing flowers into the audience.

Madame Rosebud came out in a gorgeous gold dress, performing a perfectly undercooled act, causing Wilfredo to inform us that we all just nibbled on the nipple of excitement.

Ellie Steingraeber let us in on her all-American aerobics routine, and seeing all those hoops definitely got us excited.

Wilfredo introduced Jonathan again, saying “He’s just trying to make ends meet.” Jonathan did a long act where he essentially ripped up a newspaper, then made it whole again – an interesting twist for a contortionist.

Wilfredo was in fine form tonight, throwing out zingers like “I see you taking a look at my Lower East Side!

Cassandra Rosebeetle was a bride in white, a convincing ball and chain.

Zero Boy was next, bringing his one-man sound effect comedy to the Slipper Room. Afterwards Wilfredo asked him about his upcoming show, but not before he commented “You’re so tall your wife must go up on you.”

Peekaboo Pointe gave us her salty salute to “Nobody Does It Better”

Cassandra came out for the gogo intermission as a blood red nurse.

Wilfredo took us back into the show for the second half with his rendition of “Those were the days”. Rosebud paid tribute to David Bowie with “Wild is the Wind”.

Ellie brought us hoop aerial, contorting in the hoop and bringing the eighties back.

Cassandra had both hands red with candle until she poured the wax out over herself.

And Peekaboo gave us the ultimate send-off with her Lazy Stripper act, telling us all to “go away!” and asking us “Why are you still here? Urgh!

Uncle Earl came out for the traditional Saturday night “Sweet Caroline” singalong (which saw two patrons dive into the backstage and join the dancers on stage to fill it up, as some of the performers had left already on this late night). And then Wilfredo came back out too, and they did a duet to “Theme from New York” to close off the show.

Wilfredo wanted to bring someone out for gogo, but didn’t know who was next (and frankly, there weren’t any dancers left that hadn’t taken the gogo box yet). He asked the DJ to get creative, and the DJ announced “On the gogo box, it’s your host – Wilfredo!” Good move, and Wilfredo obliged, and I made sure to make it worth his while.

It had been a while since we had closed the Slipper Room together, but this was a perfect way to celebrate our four years in New York!

Review 6 comments on Wasabassco’s The Hellfire Club

Wasabassco’s The Hellfire Club

Once every few months, Wasabassco hosts a burlesque show where the performers go all the way. We had seen it at the Kraine Theatre in the East Village, but since then the event has moved to the Gemini & Scorpio Loft in Brooklyn and changed slightly to have a dress code and only allow pre-sale ticket entrance, which we assume helps to keep it classy and filled with people who really wanted to be there.

We arrived about fifteen minutes before the show’s start, and there was already gogo action on the stage. Logan Laveau and Puss-N-Boots were bar bunnies on duty, Sapphire Jones walked among the patrons as hospitality, and we spotted both Gigi Bon Bon and photographer Ellen Stagg in attendance.

At 9 sharp, Nasty Canasta bookended her sleazy Nightrain routine inbetween two slivers of classic burlesque music for the parts where she kept her pasties on.

Tiger Bay commanded us to comply with her futuristic permafrost act, dressed in black like a female robocop oozing control with a baseball bat held with those black leather thumbless gloves that sadly were about the only thing that didn’t come off by the end. Her icy death stare dominated the audience throughout, and this act was a definite highlight.

Sydni Deveraux brought back the nineties in a bubblegum school outfit going to the beach, spreading out a bathing towel and putting the cream back in suncream, accentuating her youthful transgressions with “oops,I didn’t mean to do that” looks.

This first triad took us to the break, which ended with Nina La Voix coming out sitting at a table dressed in long lilac feather boa’s (which were hard to avoid stepping on later in the break for some patrons, as it turns out).

Qualms Galore took it back to the seventies with Donna Summer.

Delysia La Chatte took the stage dressed only in a large black sheet, which she, after revealing it all in the opening, expertly used to draw sharply outlined partial views of her body. That is, until she brought out a skull, proceeded to make out with it, and then had it nibble on her breasts before disappearing it between her legs. The act pulled off both funny and erotic at once, and my partner and I both agreed this was the highlight act for the evening for us.

I used the second break to unclog one of only two bathrooms in the loft to speed up the proceedings. After that, Gigi La Femme (who moved out of New York, but was back for the week) performed an act to Dimitri From Paris’s “Une Very Stylish Fille”, which I sadly can’t find on Spotify.

Jenny C’est Quoi usually has acts that go just a little bit more out there, and this time was no exception. We couldn’t really see what happened exactly, but it seemed she slid something between her legs, took out her phone, and handed it to a woman in the audience to play with. We were guessing that the phone controlled the something. A little bit later, she passed the phone to a man on the other side, who gingerly said “Watch out!”. At the end she took out the something and pretended it was a phone as well, talking to an imaginary someone on the other side as she walked off.

The show ended with the traditional unwrapping of Amanda Whip: Amanda takes a seat, and performers one by one come up to remove an article of clothing as suggestively as possible. Gigi made off with a necklace, and Sydni and Qualms came up together, allowing me to settle the burning question of “which of them is taller?” (answer: they both are, as far as I could tell).

And with that, the show was over, the gogo started again, and we mingled with the guests for a bit before buying a Hellfire Club photo book and making our way back to Manhattan to the Slipper Room.

Review 0 comments on Glitter Gutter

Glitter Gutter

At 22.15, Walt Whitman took the stage of The Slipper Room.

He introduced Cassandra Rosebeetle first, who was dressed in a three watermelon combo dancing to Watermelon man.

Chipps Cooney showed us why he is the ultimate magician anti-hero.

Hazel Honeysuckle came out in a blue outfit and danced to a three song sequence, ending with giant feather fans.

Velvet Crayon did an actual Burlesque act, taking off all his clothes (and I do mean all), with a little help from Walt Whitman in the middle. Seeing him dart around the stage in his wheelchair, and ending up naked except for a koala mask, was a highlight of the evening.

And then things lifted off. An astronaut took the stage to Aerosmith’s theme song from Armageddon – Miss Jezebel Express had come to salute us. She took her helmet off, and interrupted the routine a few times because something more important was happening on her phone and she did not want to miss a thing. She ended with a crowd selfie that made it to Instagram.

Walt informed us that managed had instructed him to “work the room” if he wanted to get paid, so he obliged. He ended by asking if anyone was on their first date, and two women yelled out “us!”. He brought them to the stage, told them that a first date needs to involve drinks to loosen them up a little, and treated them to shots. They giggled and downed the shots, and then all of a sudden started to take off each other’s clothes quickly as the curtains drew open.

Surprise – Raven took the stage, giving us exactly what we came for.

An hour in, it was time for the first break, with Cassandra starting on the gogo box for two songs, then followed by Hazel for another two, in an outfit made for tipping: 5 light blue strips in the front, and a forest of yellow discs in the back.

At 23.25, Goat boy took over for Walt Whitman. I had not seen Goat boy before, and as an act it may not be my cup of tea. But no complaints from me as long as he’s introducing class acts like Cassandra, dressed like Alice in Wonderland and dancing to a Tom Waits tune.

Chipps Cooney came back out to explain most of his acts from the first half.

And then we got a second dose of Raven, together on the hoop this time, dressed in red, to Jack Garratt’s Remnants.

Hazel came out with a huge sideways set of feathers on her head and a set of blue ring tubes hanging from the side, showing off her costuming skills, and tickling the first row with her feather hat.

Velvet Crayon came back to sing two songs, one about Uranium and Franklin Roosevelt.

And then we got a rare surprise – Peaches the Gimp appeared from his trapdoor in the stage. He hadn’t been out since before the eclipse, and treated us to a stellar “Closer” as well as giving us a choice between Justin Timberlake and Gorillaz for a second act.

A tough act to follow – but Jezebel was up to the task. She did a paint-by-numbers number, and as she undressed it turned out more numbers were all over her body, which she dutifully followed with the brush until she gave up and dumped the paint all over herself, leaving her gloriously multicolored next to her easel.

That act closed the set, but then Jezebel one-upped herself by coming out to the gogo box, still covered in paint, and selling pages of her notebook for five dollars each to rub all over her and create your own work of art. Several people obliged, and she ended by taking off a man’s shirt, putting him down on all fours, and spanking the crap out of him.

It was a long night, ending at 1am, but it was worth it!

Review 0 comments on The Slipper Room Show

The Slipper Room Show

I got to The Slipper Room slightly late, thinking it started at 10pm instead of 9.30pm

9.30pm Set 1

Fancy Feast hosted the 9.30pm show.

Jason Mejias did a super-elegant and perfectly controlled rope aerial act to “Ne me quitte pas”.

Matthew Holtzclaw came up juggling lemons, which he dropped, sending them into the audience. After that he asked for money, and someone gave him a two dollar bill. Matthew asked him to write down his name on the bill, and then burnt the bill. He did some other tricks, then asked for any of the lemons that had rolled into the audience. He sliced it open with a stiletto, and lo and behold – a crumpled two dollar bill with the owner’s name on it!

Penny Wren put Danzig’s “Mother” to good use, starting with a helmet that was too warm to keep on for long.


Bastard Keith hosted the midnight show, and called on someone at the bar who explained he was an ex-boyfriend of someone who works the bar, which got awkward fairly quickly, but BK is not one to shy away from awkward. He asked Fancy, sitting in the front row, for advice, but she shrugged and said “It’s your show now”. He asked, “but what do you do in a situation like this?” “I flop out a boob.” “Hm, I can’t do that. But I have a nut!” Some people don’t need a lot of convincing.

I had never seen Alisa Fendley before, but doing an aerial act in a yellow chemical suit was hot in all the right and the wrong ways, and made all the more subtly funny given that she’s form Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Jelly Boy swallowed a few swords in his first set, then swung a beer can from a hook attached to his eyelid in his second set, causing Penny Wren in the first row to bend her legs up to cover her eyes.

The night closed with Ula Uberbusen getting political.